The Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine is now safely available for children ages 5-11. As parents navigate getting their child vaccinated against COVID-19, please see below for a list of frequently asked questions on the COVID-19 vaccine for children ages 5-11. 

Does my child need a COVID-19 vaccine?

Yes. The COVID-19 vaccine continues to be the safest and most effective way to protect your child from the COVID-19 virus. 

When should I get my child vaccinated?

Get your child vaccinated as soon as a shot is available to them. Getting your child vaccinated as soon as a vaccine is readily available is the best way to keep your child protected. 

Is the COVID-19 vaccine safe for my child?

On May 10, 2021, the Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine was made safely available to children ages 12 and older; as of [INSERT DATE], it is now safely available for children ages 5 and older.

What will happen if I don’t vaccinate my child?

Refusing to vaccinate your child exponentially increases the risk of your child contracting COVID-19, getting seriously ill/hospitalized due to a COVID-19 infection, or potentially suffering fatal consequences of COVID-19. 98.9% of people hospitalized and 99.2% of people who have died due to COVID-19 are unvaccinated.

Why did it take longer for COVID-19 vaccines to be approved for my child?

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) takes no risks in approving medical treatments for young children. The length of the COVID-19 vaccine approval process for children ages 5-11 is the effect of an overabundance of caution.

What should I do during my child’s vaccination appointment?

Tell the nurse and/or doctor if your child has any allergies. Comfort your child during their appointment. Ensure your child is seated or laying down for at least 15 minutes after their vaccination shot to prevent fainting. After your child receives their vaccine shot, do not leave for 15-30 minutes so they can be observed for allergic reactions. 

Will my child experience side effects from the COVID-19 vaccine?

There is a chance that your child will experience side effects from the COVID-19 vaccine, including pain/redness/swelling at the vaccination site, tiredness, headache, muscle pain, chills, fever, or nausea. 

The potential side effects caused by COVID-19 are not nearly as large of a risk as your unvaccinated child contracting COVID-19. Call a doctor if the redness/pain in your child’s arm worsens after 24 hours, or if their side effects are worrying and do not subside after a few days.

How much will it cost for my child to receive a COVID-19 vaccine?

The United States federal government is providing free COVID-19 vaccines to all persons living in the U.S., regardless of immigration or health insurance status. Providers of COVID-19 vaccines cannot: 

  • Charge you for the vaccine,
  • Charge you any fees if the only service provided was the COVID-19 vaccination, 
  • Deny vaccination to anyone for health insurance coverage reasons, 
  • Require additional services in order to receive a COVID-19 vaccine shot.

Should my child receive other vaccines at the same time as their COVID-19 shot?

If your child is due for any other shots at the same time as their COVID-19 shot, they can and should receive both during the same visit. Talk to your health care provider for more information.

Where can I learn more information?

For more information on COVID-19 vaccines and all other vaccines, talk to your child’s primary care provider. You can also learn more now at